Appendix Carry, Only the Assiduous, Serious, & Sober Need Apply

Ft Collins, CO –-( “Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot teach it.” ~ Hermann Hesse

“Appendix” Carry: I’m not sure that appendix carry qualifies as a “trend,” but I’m seeing it a lot more of it than I did a decade ago.

With the whole idea of concealed carry still a “novelty” in many parts of the country, and so much of it being poorly and unsafely displayed in Hollywood productions, more than a few students of our Art are currently experimenting with the Appendix Carry practice.

Simultaneously, holster-makers make available a never-ending variety of gun holster wares designed to accommodate #ad appendix carry.


I’m not a big fan of appendix carry. With my build, it’s not concealable unless I wear the gun real low with my belt pulled in way too tight, which makes it too uncomfortable and the gun too difficult to draw.
Then there’s the fact that it is dangerous for the reasons outlined in the article.

When I first started carrying a gun (illegally) in the State of California, I did it with appendix carry, but it didn’t take long to switch it to the way I carry now at the 5 o’clock spot over my right hip pocket for the most part.
I found that with my build, it was much more concealable with the right holster (key words there), quicker to draw and a hell of a lot more comfortable – while I want to know the gun is there, I damned sure don’t want to be reminded of that fact by it pinching or jabbing me.

This entry was posted in Guns. Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to Appendix Carry, Only the Assiduous, Serious, & Sober Need Apply

  1. brent says:

    And you hit the Right Reason; how well it fits You. Advocates of whatever style rarely take into account that we are all built slightly (at least) different and what works for them doesn’t work for everyone else.

    That said, you have to be a complete moron to appendix carry and I advocate that everyone so inclined to carry that way do so with a Glock in a soft sided holster with the chamber loaded with hot ammo.
    And if you still don’t believe me, talk to Tex:

    • Wirecutter says:

      Yeah, everybody’s different. That’s why I have a Box o’ Holsters – I’ll buy one that has rave reviews, and after I get it I’ll find I can’t wear it for one reason or another.

      • larryw says:

        Yep, I have that same box. Interesting thing though, I only have one appendix holster in that box; didn’t take multiple tries to discover it was a yuge ‘nope’ for me.

        • Wirecutter says:

          My Box o’ Holster’s latest addition is an IWB Kydex holster from Galco. I’ve discovered that I dislike IWB carry no matter what the position is.

    • Capt. Craig says:

      Brent, you obviously don’t know where your appendix is.

  2. max says:

    I’m an oddball on this, but I carry on my hip. I feel I get a lot less printing than I would either appendix or 5 o’clock (really 7 o’clock).

    • Wirecutter says:

      Around here, where I could give a shit less if the gun prints if I bend a certain way, I carry on my hip.

    • arc says:

      I carry on the 5 or 6 because my fat ass can move around and work easier without it in the way, but I don’t like having my weapons behind me. If I’m not laboring / working, then it goes to the 3.5-4 position.

  3. crazyeighter says:

    I don’t see any way that appendix carry could be comfortable, especially for us guys with “overhang”.

    • Chris Mallory says:

      Yeah, I would have to lift my dunlap to draw from appendix carry. I either hip carry or use the inside left hand pocket of my Duluth Trading Working Man’s Vest. The vest is nice since it has plenty of pockets for my phone, billfold, spare magazines, ink pens and other assorted junk. Light enough I can wear it in a Kentucky summer with 99% humidity. Comes in colors other than black so it doesn’t look “tactical”.

  4. tallow pot says:

    Too much belly for appendix carry, too much ass for 5 o’clock, s.o.b. catches up my jacket and is uncomfortable while driving, not enough moobs for a shoulder rig.
    Oh, and cross draw is dangerous, so I’m told.

  5. Ohio Guy says:

    It’s definitely not for everyone. It is, however, for lean guys with a fair amount of training. Seeins how I aint lean no more, I’m all like you fellas on this topic!

  6. pigpen51 says:

    I was involved in a discussion online on the fact that it seems that AIWB automatically violates one of the 4 rules of gun handling. It just seemed to me that it is an accident looking for a place to happen. Not only did I get lectured on how training can make it a safe method of carry, but because I dared to question someone whose name I did not know, I was chastened for not knowing who this person was, and for being so stupid for not knowing how stupid I was.
    I have no problem with being corrected when I am wrong. In fact, I actually find it a good thing, since I am always more than happy to learn when I am wrong. I have gone back to friends and those that I have not know, alike and thanked them for pointing out when I was wrong, and apologized for my mistake. I find it that important to be right when you are trying to prove a point.
    What I was saddened by was the amount of vitriol sent my way by people of the gun, that should have not acted that way, but instead tried to treat anyone who was mistaken with kid gloves, in order to win them over to our side, and to a better understanding of how kind and accepting our side is. Fortunately, I have pretty thick skin, and was able to let it go, but it still angered me somewhat, and while I have forgiven, I probably won’t forget. Kindness is always a good thing to display, no matter the item under discussion. Even if you lose the argument, you may walk away with a new friend, or at least will walk away with a person who has respect for you.

    • Wirecutter says:

      Man, if you have no problem being corrected when wrong, you should run a blog. I get corrected damned near every day.

    • M. Sage says:

      To be fair, any carry method is an accident waiting to happen.

      I’m a fan of keeping the gun in the holster unless I’m going to clean it or shoot it. I come home at night, take the holster/gun assembly off. Leave in the morning, put the holster/gun assembly on. As long as you’re using a good, stiff holster that covers the trigger, you can consider the pistol as being in a safe condition.

      I don’t do appendix carry (got a gut, won’t work) but even then, just inside waistband you’ve got to recognize there’s a really good chance of putting a hole in yourself if you’re not careful.

  7. Bad_Brad says:

    I don’t know anyone that lives a lifestyle that would accommodate appendix carry. Except for those Internet Pistoleros. And even when they sit down or climb in their truck or car, they pull their holster off. Personally I’m up a down all day. Appendix is greasy fast but not practical. At least not for me. I carry strong side, outside. With a good gun belt you can get pretty speedy.

    • Wirecutter says:

      I’m not a fast draw anymore by any means, but it takes me twice as long to draw from the appendix carry than it does any other method.

      • Bad_Brad says:

        I think the theory is it’s like reaching for your balls. Which would explain why it doesn’t benefit womenz. Lol

      • Bad_Brad says:

        PS, 5:00 is my favorite spot. A good stiff gun belt and your average blue jeans allows you to slide some holsters way forward until it hits the belt loop. Some holsters: Blade Tech etc.

  8. M. Sage says:

    I looked real hard into appendix carry. There’s a lot involved in doing it right. But, like some others already pointed out, if you have any gut at all, it’s not going to work, so I’m out. That said, my build lets me conceal a full-size double stack 9 inside waistband at 4 o’clock, and I’m fine with that. I run a stiff belt that pulls the pistol in tight, and as much cant as my holster’s adjustment allows for. It’s hard to tell, but I’ve ever noticed that I’d been “made” once so far, and that was mostly due to a gust of wind.

    There’s a lot people don’t understand about appendix carry, I learned a lot while I was trying to make it work. Was I worried about shooting myself? Nah. I shoot DA/SA, and every time I go into the holster, the hammer is down and I push the pistol down with my thumb. On a double action trigger, if you’re holstering that way, it’s impossible for the trigger to get pulled by a snag. Someone even developed a thing to add that type of functionality to Glock, entirely for AIWB carry: So safety-wise, AIWB doesn’t bother me, though I see a lot of knuckleheads on the internet who don’t even get how to draw a pistol correctly that have dove in head first to something that should be reserved for people that actually know what they’re doing and I really wouldn’t suggest it with a regular striker fired or single action pistol, unless you’re really really careful going into the holster, OR, my preferred method even with IWB on the hip, put the gun in the holster, then put the entire thing on. It’s basically impossible to put a hole in yourself if you do it that way. If you draw it, you probably don’t need to put it away in a hurry… it’s a defensive pistol, after all.

    Any kind of carry, a person should have a very solid grasp on the draw stroke and muzzle awareness. And a lot of the “trainers” out there will skip that step to get people on the range making holes in targets – you know, the fun part.

    • Larry says:

      Absolutely. I carry my PPQ IWB at about 2.5 o’clock. It’s got a 5″ barrel that angles back over my hip joint. I put a suede leather backing on the holster with a pad on the barrel end that both cushions it and makes the grip tuck in better under my belly overhang (it’s not bad, but I could lose 30 pounds to get back where I was in the military). I added a kydex rib to extend the leather backing all the way behind the the grip so it doesn’t rub anywhere. It’s actually pretty damned comfortable to wear and is even easy to draw in the car with the seat belt belt on. My SiG P365 is thinner and smaller and goes IWB at 3 o’clock, but in the car, I need to release the seat belt to get it. I need to figure out a better way for that.

  9. crazyeighter says:

    Once you’ve gotten used to being corrected when you’re NOT wrong, then the other way is a piece of cake.

  10. dave in pa. says:

    hi, back in the old days, we where told you can dump the gun if faced with a checkpoint,but
    it’s a lot harder to get rid of the holster. and the one spot missed by most guy doing a pat down
    was the small of the back, couple of rubber bands around the grip-go to go.
    now, i legal, i use owb right hip t o’clock . it safe-with a good holster,fast as any.
    they also taught us ,slow is smooth,smooth is fast, take your time and put them where they
    count. and anything worth shooting once, is worth shooting twice. always them 2 shots.

  11. Heathen says:

    Since my chest is still larger than my waist I’m able to carry a double stack 9mm Sig P320 Compact or sub-compact IWB at 11 o’clock all day, everyday in a kydex AIWB holster. Occasionally do the same with my Sig P250 Compact (DAO) in 45acp or my Sig P220 also chambered in 45(DA/SA) in a hybrid holster. Only problem I have with the P220 is the decocker isn’t “ideal” for a southpaw,thus my preference for the striker-fired P320.

    As mentioned, put the pistol in the holster..then place it in position with a gun-belt stiff enough to support it. Then leave it there unless needed. End of day, remove holster & gun.

    I’ve the box of holsters also. Tried carrying at 8 o’clock,prefer my current choice instead.

  12. Gator says:

    I have a pretty flat stomach and a big chest, so it works for me. Even with just a t shirt on, a G19 with a spare mag disappears on me. I did have to lose about 20 pounds for it to be comfortable. As far as blowing my dick off, I practiced the draw hundreds of times with an empty gun. I don’t draw or reholster it loaded unless I’m at the range. I load up, and put the whole thing on my belt. When I get home, I draw, download, then take the holster off my belt. It does get slightly uncomfortable on long car trips, but I just take the entire thing off my belt and put it in the door or under the seat.

    It’s definitely not for everyone, and it did take some getting used to because I’m used to strong side. But it’s easier to conceal a bigger gun in AIWB. People carrying guns isn’t a big deal where I live, it’s pretty common. But I prefer people to not be able to tell I am. Especially picking the kids up from school. It is fast though, my cold draw/fire time is high .8s to low .9 seconds. Once I’m warmed up, I get fast. Personal best is .63. Obviously the chances of me ever needing to do that are minuscule but it’s not a bad skill to have.

  13. John Deaux says:

    Brent, if memory serves me correctly, I find saw that video a few years ago, Tex was using a Serpa holster carried strong side, 4 or 5 o’clock. Also, he was shooting a Single Acton Automatic, 45, with the safety off. Lots of stupidity in that video caused by Ted that others can learn from.

    • M. Sage says:

      Yeah, he was one of those idiots who shouldn’t have been running live from the holster yet.

      FWIW, I used a SERPA as a range holster for years – was doing so before everybody declared them unsafe, and still would if my pistol didn’t wear a light 24/7. Thousands of draws from them, never found my finger on the trigger until it was supposed to go there.

      • John Deaux says:

        I have one that I use occasionally, never saw any problems with it. Do your part and it would do great

  14. Paraclete says:

    Five w/ forward tilt works for me.
    (3 1/2″ Citadel .45, Novack combat
    sights, extended beaver and releases)
    I believe we all have the “box- o- mistakes”
    but that’s how we learn “what” to look for…
    and what applies to our individual needs.
    The bigger the collection, mirrors the challenges
    needed to overcome.
    Being a .45 guy, most of my “box-o-mistakes”
    are for that profile. The disappointments range
    from poor leather craft to poor retention.
    Two of my best OTW holster systems are:
    1) custom mold w/ Blackhawk paddle
    2) Versa carry buffalo hide holster and belt
    The versa carry belt is by hands down a good
    investment for the investment for the quality received.
    A little thick at first, but you come to appreciate it when
    you carry an all steel pistol. Their belt carries well.
    Now if you want to talk combat rigs, there’s several
    ways to go. We’ll save that for another time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *